I remember the first time somebody recommend I try online dating. I was in my early 50s and, to be honest, it just sounded absurd. My first reaction was that online dating is something other people do, not me. If I recall correctly, I made some dumb joke based on online dating stereotypes and laughed it off.
It was only in the coming days, when I found the thought returning to me, that I really started to think about online dating. I wondered why I reacted the way I did to online dating, and I realised that it was out of fear.
It sounds silly, but it was true. Not just the fear of putting myself out there on the market (which was quite real, let me tell you), but the fear the unknown; what is online dating like? What if somebody finds out I use it?
Soon, I realised that my fear of online dating was a completely irrational one and signed up, throwing myself wholeheartedly into the mature dating scene. Today? I’m married to a brilliant woman I met on a mature dating website. I got over my fear of online dating, and its time you did too.
As online dating has continued to grow in prominence, the reasons for not giving it a go have shrunk accordingly. Way back when online first dating took off, it was seen as an antisocial, nerdy way to meet somebody. In 2017, you’d be hard pushed to find somebody who doesn’t understand the value of meeting somebody in their own time and on their own terms.
Much of this renewed enthusiasm for online dating is coming from young people, who are flocking to phone based apps to meet one another. However, the real growth area is amongst people like you and me – mature, single daters.
According to research conducted by Pew, online dating usage amongst 45-53 year olds has leapt 5% to 13% and for users aged between 55-64, it’s doubled to an incredible 12%. Whilst that might not sound like much, it amounts to hundreds of millions of mature free and single daters online.
So, of course the preconceptions of who use online dating are way off, but the fear of the unknown? That’s also nonsense.
Online dating is, ultimately, not vastly different to how you’ve met people your entire life. It’s about conversation and personality. The only way it does differ is in how you meet people, as online dating takes away much of the random chance elements of traditional dating.
With an online dating website, you know that everyone you’re seeing is single and interested in finding that special somebody. From that base, all you need to do is get in touch. No complicated skills required, just your personality and the will to meet somebody.
So, isn’t it about time you got over your fear of online dating?